Zedd Poses For ‘Billboard,’ Reveals Upcoming Collaborations


Zedd Interview

We speak to Zedd about his ‘True Colors Tour,’ next single and future projects.

Zedd lands on the cover of the latest issue of Billboard, which only seems fitting given his vice-like grip on pop radio courtesy of hits like “Stay,” “Starving” and new single “Get Low.” The German DJ suits up for the suave shoot, posing on the Malibu shoreline. In addition to serving Blue Steel, the 27-year-old also opens up about dating Selena Gomez in the accompanying interview (reporters called his parents and hacked his phone) and reveals a couple of his upcoming collaborations.

For starters, there’s a track called “The Middle,” which features the vocals of “Stay” co-writer Sarah Aarons. He also joins forces with rising Norwegian diva Sigrid (of “Don’t Kill My Vibe” fame) on “Are You Happy Now” and is putting together a mellow duet for Khalid and K.Flay. “As you can tell, the music I’ve been making is very far from the bro-y side of things,” Zedd says. “But I’ve never made bro-y music, in my opinion. I don’t think I’m good at it.” Click through the sandy shoot up top.

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Fergie’s ‘Double Dutchess’ Album Rollout Is A Hot Mess


Fergie's Twitter Q&A

The pop star opens up about Kanye West, Britney Spears and ’80s porn.

As the sequel to one of the most beloved and successful pop albums of the ’00s, Fergie’s Double Dutchess should have been an event. Instead, it has been a long and agonizing trainwreck that began way back in 2014 with “L.A. Love (La La).” That song was on-trend and performed respectably on the charts (it reached number 27 on the Hot 100), but the project was put on hold and we didn’t get another single until 2016’s polarizing “M.I.L.F. $.” I loved the track, but it was very niche and never going to find love at radio.

At least it made an impression, however, unlike the stillborn “Life Goes On.” Say what you want about Fergie, but she has never been boring until that mid-tempo snooze dropped and disappeared. After a string of “disappointments,” the pop star swapped record labels — setting up Dutchess Music at BMG. It provided the perfect opportunity to regroup and work on new music, but it looks like she stuck with the original tracklist (some of these songs are now three years old) when the album leaked last week. In full. Instead of rush-releasing the opus, Fergie is just teasing it like nothing happened.

Which is fair enough. Leaks happen and albums routinely arrive weeks or even months (Madonna’s Rebel Heart, for example) before their official release. However, it would have been nice to get some kind of announcement. Starting with an official release date. It would also be great to have a new single to get excited about. Instead, Fergie is spamming Instagram with confusing snippets of various videos and it makes absolutely no sense. Which, unfortunately, is just par for the course with this album.

more shatter 💥💥

A post shared by Fergie (@fergie) on Aug 9, 2017 at 12:36pm PDT

⛓⛓

A post shared by Fergie (@fergie) on Aug 8, 2017 at 11:47am PDT

who’s there 👁👁

A post shared by Fergie (@fergie) on Aug 7, 2017 at 10:54am PDT

been hearing voices…

A post shared by Fergie (@fergie) on Aug 5, 2017 at 6:01pm PDT

…and seeing double

A post shared by Fergie (@fergie) on Aug 5, 2017 at 6:02pm PDT

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Little Mix Almost Recorded This Quirky K-Pop Hit


Little Mix's Sexy 'Touch' Video

Little Mix bump and grind through their sexy ‘Touch’ video.

Little Mix usually play it pretty safe with their formulaic, made-for-radio pop hits, but every now and then they’ll do something interesting like “Move.” One of the more unique songs that they could have recorded is the recent K-Pop smash “Red Flavor” by girl group Red Velvet. The producers behind it, Swedish duo Caesar & Loui, have just revealed that it was originally penned for the British quartet before the Korean chart-toppers snatched it up for themselves.

“It was actually aimed for the UK band Little Mix since we had a meeting with one of their A&Rs at the time,” the pair told Tone Glow. “The result was the song ‘Dance With Nobody.’ It was the original title before the lyrics were translated into Korean.”

The Swedish hitmakers also gave their thoughts on the difference between Asian pop music and Western pop music, explaining that K-Pop and J-Pop labels “aren’t afraid of taking chances” and are always looking for something “fresh and new.” Perhaps “Red Flavor” was just too quirky and forward-thinking for Little Mix to handle? Take a listen below and let us know if you think that the “Wings” wailers could do it justice.

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Miley Cyrus, Shawn Mendes, Fifth Harmony & More Announced To Perform At 2017 VMAs


Moonwoman! Katy Perry Is Hosting The 2017 VMAs

Katy Perry touches down in a glamorous pink spacesuit to announce that she’ll host the 2017 VMAs.

MTV is pulling out all the stops to ensure that the 2017 Video Music Awards are a night to remember. They have already announced that Katy Perry will be hosting this year’s awards with an intergalactic video, and now they have snared some of the hottest acts to perform their hits at the show. The “Swish Swish” hitmaker will be joined onstage by Miley Cyrus, Lorde, Ed Sheeran, Fifth Harmony, The Weeknd, Shawn Mendes and 30 Seconds to Mars. Kendrick Lamar, who leads this year’s nominees with mentions in 8 categories, has interestingly not been announced as a performer. It’s possible that he will sign on in the coming weeks alongside a second list of performers.

Last year’s event, which featured performances from the likes of Beyonce, Rihanna and Britney Spears, received some of the worst ratings in the history of the awards show with only 6.5 million viewers tuning in. The poor showing may have sparked some changes in promoting the show moving forward. This year, producers axed gendered awards categories, meaning that male and female acts will finally be competing for the same awards. In another move toward embracing equality, the iconic Moonman Award has been renamed the Moonperson Award. Producers have yet to announce if an act is set to receive the coveted Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award this year, which would also generate some hype. Last year’s recipient Rihanna opened and closed the show with a string of high octane sets. Hopefully the changes and another star studded group of performers will make for a better outing this year. The 2017 VMAs are set to air August 27. Check out MTV’s announcement below!

🚨 Performing live at the 2017 #VMAs…🚨

A post shared by MTV (@mtv) on Aug 7, 2017 at 11:06am PDT

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Selena Gomez Describes Her Next Single As “Really Upbeat”


Selena's Unhinged 'Fetish' Video

Selena Gomez eats cleaning products and twirls around a freezer in her ‘Fetish’ video.

Selena Gomez spilled a splash (a drop?) of tea in an Instagram video on Friday (August 4). The pop star brought up the third single from her next album, describing it as “really upbeat.” Which is good news for fans thirsty for a banger after a pair of mid-tempo bops. The fact that she’s already teasing the song is also a possible indication that it’s coming sooner than expected. Which raises the question if “Fetish,” which has peaked at number 27 on the Billboard Hot 100 thus far, is going to be dismissed as a buzz track.

The 25-year-old’s new era has certainly been full of surprises. Selena delivered one of the year’s quirkiest and most-acclaimed singles with “Bad Liar,” before completely immersing herself in the world of alt-pop with “Fetish.” Both songs have racked up impressing streaming numbers, but haven’t graced the upper reaches of the charts due to a lack of promotion. (She is yet to perform either song live). That could change with the upcoming MTV VMAs or the “It Ain’t Me” singer could simply continue doing pop part-time. See her Instagram video below.

“It’s really upbeat.” – Selena Gomez on her 3rd single during her Instagram Live 8/4/2017 https://t.co/CNxQR6Sl8l pic.twitter.com/QXy6i1KNlK

— Selena Gomez News (@SelGomezNewsCOM) August 5, 2017

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East Beat: Your Guide To Asia’s Best Pop Songs Feat. Girls’ Generation & CLC


East Beat: Dreamcatcher & Monsta X

Your guide to the week’s best K-Pop songs featuring Dreamcatcher and Monsta X.

The world of pop music moves fast, especially for those who enjoy the sounds of the East and the West. Keeping up with the Hot 100 is hard enough, let alone knowing what’s going on in Japan and the blink-and-you’ll-miss-it K-Pop scene. To help you stay on top of Asia’s hottest pop music, I’ve put together East Beat — a handy guide to the best K-Pop and J-Pop songs of the week.

Girls’ Generation shook things up on Friday with the release of their tenth anniversary album, Holiday Night. We already reviewed the first two singles, so I want to highlight the album’s best B-side: “Fan.” Veteran hitmaker Kenzie delivers pounding pop production with twinkling synths and uplifting strings, while Girls’ Generation belt out an ode to the loyal fanbase that’s been by their side for the past decade. Good stuff.

Shifting gears completely is CLC, who become the first K-Pop group to dabble in City Pop with their dreamy new single, “Where Are You?” For those that don’t know, City Pop is a style of Japanese pop music that was huge in the eighties, but has recently seen a resurgence in the country thanks to artists like Especia. It’s often characterized by a lot of synthesizers and saxophone, both of which feature prominently in CLC’s luscious new tune.

Serving something more modern are Nine Muses (who should probably change their name to Four Muses at this point) with “Love City.” The electro-pop banger sounds like an old Britney Spears demo that was submitted somewhere around Circus or Femme Fatale, but didn’t make the cut — and I mean that as a compliment. Every millennial pop fan knows that unmastered Britney demos are the best thing ever.

We reviewed Samuel’s debut single “Sixteen” earlier this week and it’s been on replay ever since. The sweet synth-pop bop sounds like teenage Justin Bieber, pre-bad boy makeover, and would probably decimate Radio Disney if it got U.S. release. Rumour has it that Bieber and Austin Mahone were found dead in a ditch shortly after hearing it!

GFRIEND have been slaying the charts all week with “Love Whisper,” which is a very sweet slice of symphonic springtime bubblegum with an early ’90s twist. But as much as I like it, I’ve actually been playing their dancier B-side “Ave Maria” much more.

One of the safer K-Pop songs of the week is WINNER’s “Island.” The boy band had a massive hit earlier this year with their dancehall, trop-house track “Really Really,” and they’ve just repeated the formula for “Island,” but it works.

Very little time passes in Japan without Koda Kumi shouting over some messy J-Pop beats. In fact, the veteran songstress has already released two studio albums this year alone. As expected, she’s already back with a ‘special single’ called “Lit.” Her music can be pretty hit and miss, but this is a lot of fun with a musical flair and an annoyingly catchy chorus. Check it out below.

What are you listening to this week? Let us know below, or by hitting us up on Facebook and Twitter!

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The Drop: Your Guide To New Music Friday Featuring Starrah, Bantu & Nakita


The Drop: Felix Snow & Julia Michaels

Your guide to New Music Friday featuring gems from Felix Snow and Julia Michaels.

Fridays can be overwhelming for pop fans. Every week you’re bombarded with a glut of new music, which can lead to ear candy falling through the cracks. I’m hoping to circumvent that tragic scenario with The Drop — a cheat sheet (of sorts) to get you through New Music Friday. By now, you’ve probably listened to Kesha’s soaring “Hymn,” bopped along to Bebe Rexha’s feisty “That’s It” and possibly even checked out K-Pop gems from Girls’ Generation and Samuel. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Let’s start with a pair of red-hot newcomers. After making waves with debut EP Foolish Ones (check out “Where Are You?” and “Lost”), New Zealand’s Nakita takes it to the next level with “In The Water.” A compelling electro-pop song about holding on to the ones you love, the 18-year-old is definitely One To Watch. Another pop star on the rise is Jaira Burns. She follows up the attention-grabbing “Ugly” with a ruthlessly catchy mid-tempo bop called “Burn Slow.” Taking it easy has never sounded so appealing.

Ava Max is another fresh face to keep an eye on. The rising star, who is signed to Atlantic and working on hits with Cirkut, lends her smooth vocals to Le Youth’s “Clap Your Hands.” The nu-disco producer always comes through with a bop and this is one of his catchiest to date. Phoebe Ryan, on the other hand, is a staple on The Drop courtesy of alt-pop gems like “Dollar Bill” and “Boyz N Poizn.” She returns with “Forgetting All About You” — a relatable track about bouncing back from a break-up. It’s only a matter of time before one of her songs goes nuclear and this has as good a chance as any.

Speaking of regulars, I think I’ve posted every song Grace Mitchell has released this year. But I can’t help it if she always delivers a sing-along synth-pop/rock anthem and that certainly applies to “Capital Letters” — a brooding jam from her upcoming debut album. Gia’s “What I Like” is not technically new (it arrived last Friday), but I’m including it because I can’t get it out of my head. Written by “Move” pop pioneer Jesse Saint John and produced by King Henry, the 20-year-old’s latest is a catchy reminder to let go of inhibitions and be yourself. She’s come a long way since “Only A Girl.”

Next up is a pair of singer/songwriters. Anna Mae’s “Call Girl” isn’t a scandalous bop about a woman of the night. Instead, it’s a relatable rant about people hiding behind their phones and social media avatars. The Nashville-based talent has just signed with Prescription Songs, so expect to her to land a bunch of cuts shortly. An artist further along in her songwriting journey is Starrah. After penning Rihanna’s “Needed Me” and Halsey’s “Now Or Never,” the woman with the golden pen (or keyboard?) teams up with Diplo for the sultry “Imperfections.”

Starrah isn’t the only behind-the-scenes big shot dropping new music this week. Production trio Captain Cuts follow up “Love Like We Used To” with “Cocaina” — a Latin-infused party jam about falling in love with a drug dealer. It’s different for them, but undeniably catchy. Joining them in stepping out from behind the boards is The Monsters And The Strangerz member MarcLo. “Rock The B.O.A.T.” is the latest taste of his ’90s-influenced Project Nostalgia and it’s another stone cold bop. Bantu’s has carved out a niche as a pop alchemist, blending traditional African instruments with pop production on his Africa For The Summer EP (August 11). The Zimbabwe-born artist/producer’s new single “Visa” is another example of his unique wizardry.

The world music trend continues with The Preatures’ “Yanada” (it means “moon” in the Indigenous Australian Dharug language). The synth-rock band pays tribute to their Sydney hometown and artfully blends their signature sound with something new and earthy. Bring on their sophomore LP, Girlhood! Let’s wind things up with a quirky cover. Canadian soul singer Bobby Bazini tackles Selena Gomez’s “Bad Liar,” transforming it into something completely new and intoxicating. Listen to his killer cover in my playlist below.

What are you into this week? Let us know below, or by hitting us up on Facebook and Twitter!

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Rude! A Paparazzo Advises Mariah Carey To Watch Her Cholesterol


Mariah Carey Is Basically A Saint

Patriot, Feminist Role Model & LGBTQ Icon. Mariah Carey is basically a saint.

Well, this is just rude! Mariah Carey was enjoying a date night with (pretend) boyfriend Bryan Tanaka when a paparazzo decided to run his mouth as she left one of Los Angeles’ fanciest restaurants. While Mimi blessed fans with autographs and generally exuded glamor in a typically stylish black ensemble, the unidentified verbal assailant loudly told the “I Don’t” diva that she should watch her cholesterol. There is a visible grimace on her face when the words register.

He didn’t stop there. The feelings-destroyer then asked Mariah if she ate a lot of steak. I’m pretty sure the 47-year-old’s eating habits are none of his business. Apart from being grilled with inappropriate questions, Mimi is gearing up for her annual Christmas takeover. It’s a given that “All I Want For Christmas Is You” will slay the charts, but she’s also releasing a new track called “The Star” from a similarly-titled animated movie. Watch the enduring hitmaker’s awkward run in with the paparazzi below.

🚫 A paparazzi to Mariah Carey ” Watch your cholesterol ” and ” lots of steak ” 😐 You could see the hurt in her eyes when he said that 🚫 pic.twitter.com/zheHdkr2QO

— CTTAFM 🌊 (@parisforce) August 2, 2017

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Garbage Rages Against The Machine In Powerful “No Horses” Video


Shirley Manson Interview

We talk to the singer about the 20th anniversary of Garbage’s self-titled debut LP.

Garbage takes a stand on new single, “No Horses.” The enduring rockers retreats to the pitch-black soundscape of their Y2K albums to rail against the state of the world. “And there will be no apologies and no more security,” Shirley Manson warns on the ominous track, which raises money for the International Committee of the Red Cross. “There will be no cops just men with guns.” It gets even bleaker from there. “There’s nothing to grieve, there’s nothing to lose… this is the apocalypse.”

The track goes straight for throat and the video is just as aggressive. “It’s been my observation that when governments disregard their citizens for their own greed, the ensuing soundtrack usually kicks ass,” director Scott Stuckey reveals. “Like Nina Simone’s ‘Mississippi Goddam’ or The Clash’s ‘Straight To Hell,’ ‘No Horses’ made me realize that I’m not going insane, these really are fucked up times. The lyrics are powerful so the challenge was to add something visually that wouldn’t ruin the individual’s interpretation.”

He achieves this by having the rock veterans dress up like extras from The Handmaid’s Tale. Shirley rocks a white gown and washes Butch Vig’s feet in blood, while the rest of the band looks on. That disturbing visual is intercut with scenes of the world literally falling to pieces. If the track stokes the flames of your Garbage obsession, check out their new coffee table book, This is The Noise That Keeps Me Awake (buy here). It includes never before seen photographs of the band as well as pieces written by each of the four band members.

Our super cute new advertising campaign courtesy of garbage fan @rkuh

A post shared by garbage (@garbage) on Jul 30, 2017 at 12:19pm PDT

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Lorde Poses For ‘Fashion Magazine,’ Opens Up About Her Creative Process


Lorde's 'Melodrama': Album Review

Lorde returns with her sophomore LP, which explores the dangers of letting loose.

Lorde strikes a pose for the pragmatically-titled Fashion Magazine, serving a series of ethereal, flowery looks. The 20-year-old also gave an interview about her creative process. “I’m hyper-musical, but I don’t really play anything,” the Kiwi reveals. “I write the songs with different chords because I know exactly what I want chord-wise, and then I sing out the chords. I’m very musical, just not in the traditional way, I guess.” That method informed her working relationship with Melodrama producer Jack Antonoff.

“It was such exploration,” Lorde explains. “The instinct is to assume that I wrote all the lyrics and he did all the production, but sonically this album is so my baby.” Not that they had the easier working relationship. “I think I definitely shoot from the hip probably 90 per cent of the time,” the “Green Light” singer admits. “There were times when Jack would be like, ‘Just give me a second; don’t shoot this down straight away’ and I was occasionally surprised, which was nice.”

My favorite part of the interview, however, is this lovely quote about pop music. “It’s about distilling emotions down to their sleekest, shiniest and simplest form,” Lorde explains. “And if you do that successfully, it’s like shooting up the cleanest drug imaginable. It’s not cut with anything; it’s so simple it just goes straight to your brain.” Well said. Click through her stunning shoot up top.

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